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Career Institute of Florida Marshall Plan Argumentative Essay

Career Institute of Florida Marshall Plan Argumentative Essay

Question Description


For this assignment, you will analyze a collection of online primary sources, some textual, some visual, and use at least 3 of the sources (4 including your textbook, because you MUST use the textbook as a source) in formulating a thesis and supporting it in your paper. You may certainly use more than the minimum number of sources, but they must all be from the list in the Week 6 Module, outside sources are not acceptable in this course . Using all of the knowledge you have acquired in our class this semester, combine these sources provided on canvas to complete your paper.


This Paper is due on Sunday, August 2nd at 11:59pm on Canvas, submission via Turnitin.com

  • DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE LAST HOUR TO UPLOAD. Turnitin and canvas tend to crash around submission times, especially starting at 11pm. Prepare to have your paper ready to upload at least an hour before the deadline to troubleshoot any delays. There are no late submissions for deadline/uploading issues in this course.
  • DO NOT upload a .pages file. If you are using pages, please submit a .docx or .pdf version of your essay


  • NO COVER PAGES (points deduction)
  • Name, Date and Panther ID in header (NO headings that take up half a page: also points deduction)
  • Your paper must be minimum 1000 words, recommended length 1200-1300 words
  • Times 12 pt font DOUBLE SPACED 1″ margins
  • approx. 3-4 pages in length NOT including bibliography
  • Chicago-style Bibliography on separate page
  • Chicago-style footnote citations
  • Review for errors of spelling and grammar—this is a formal written report!

    • I recommend using the advanced spelling and grammar check functions in your word processor of choice
    • RE-READ your paper to yourself, at least once. If you don’t understand a sentence, chances are I won’t either


Was the Marshall Plan, America’s plan for European recovery, necessary to keep Europe peaceful, or was it all a calculated move as part of America’s new front on containing Communism?

As Europe climbed out of the Second World War, Communist and Capitalist ideologies seemed poised to plunge Europe into another harrowing and massive conflict. Many scholars believe the Cold War began as soon as WWII ended, though most agree that by 1947, Europe had already come to an ideological, economic, social, and political division thanks to the actions of the USA and USSR.


The thesis, or argument of your paper should be a detailed and specific answer to the above question, rooted in a close analysis of the primary sources and a clear explanation of the historical context drawn from the assigned secondary source readings. It needs to be at least one sentence or two sentences long, as the last sentence of your introduction. Please read Mary Lynn Rampolla, A Pocket Guide to Writing in History, excerpts from Chapter 4, in the Getting Started Module. This handy guide is brief and provides an excellent overview of how to formulate a thesis and organize a history paper.

Note that this question does not ask you to evaluate which of the primary source documents you agree with, nor does it ask you to evaluate whether any of the documents is reliable or biased. All the documents are reliable sources of evidence about what their authors thought at the time, and all authors have biases and underlying assumptions. Your task is to explain how these complex sets of events relate to each other, beyond the obvious. Restating the prompt does not a thesis make.


Your paper must include an introduction, several distinct body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

Your introduction should not begin with an overly broad, general statement, but instead should introduce the specific time, place, and topic you are writing about. Do not assume that your reader knows anything about the history you are describing. Your introduction provides necessary context for the reader that informs your paper of how the issue that you will discuss in your thesis came to be. Good historical introductions do not need catchy hooks or buzzwords. You should really be introducing the reader to the historical causes of your thesis. Also, please be mindful that for this class, you should not be using footnotes in the introduction, as you have nothing to prove until you have revealed your thesis. The last sentence or sentences of you introduction must be your thesis. Your thesis must directly answer the prompt and also provide groupings of evidence that will preview the body paragraphs. Finishing your introduction with your thesis provides a natural springboard for the rest of your paper. Papers that do not have enough context or a sound thesis in their introduction will lose introduction, thesis, and structure points.

Your introduction must include

  • a) historical context that provides the causes and context for the thesis
  • b) a thesis statement that is the last sentence or sentences of your introduction that answers the prompt in way that does not repeat the prompt or is obvious, and c) provides an overview of how the remainder of your paper will be organized (a “road-map” for your reader).

Your body paragraphs, a minimum of at least two, should each be organized around a main idea or focal point of evidence, and should each offer evidentiary analysis and contextualization to support your thesis. This is where you will be citing primary and secondary sources and including footnotes for the reader, properly sourcing your evidence. The best body paragraphs have topic sentences that introduce the main idea of the paragraph, and have transition sentences into the the next body paragraph. Papers that do not have distinct body paragraphs with clearly grouped evidence and ideas will lose structure and analysis points.

Your conclusion should summarize your arguments first, then it provides space to add to your paper. Start your conclusion by restating your thesis, and summarizing the main points made in your body paragraphs. A wise exercise is to find a parallel with another time period in history, and draw parallels and other conclusions, like similarities or differences. A conclusion is also an excellent place to present the reader with a rhetorical question, or suggest an alternate pathway of historical development given a change. Papers that do not have conclusions and end abruptly without at least a restatement of the thesis will lose structure points.

Please read Mary Lynn Rampolla, A Pocket Guide to Writing in History, excerpts from Chapter 4, in the Getting Started Module. This handy guide is brief and provides an excellent overview of how to formulate a thesis and organize a history paper.


You are expected to read all the sources below and cite them in your paper as necessary and appropriately to support your thesis. As stated above, you may not cite sources outside this list, and will be penalized for doing so.


(Links to an external site.)


  • This paper must include several footnotes and a separate bibliography on a new page to receive any points on the rubric for proper citation

Footnotes acknowledge which parts of their paper reference particular sources, they alert the reader of where a particular piece of information that is being used as evidence comes from. Usually you use them after you quote something directly or paraphrase something from a source. Please DO NOT use block quotes, or copy entire sentences or paragraphs from the sources, those are inappropriate citations for a paper of this length. Quotes should be used sparingly. Quote phrases, and ideally, paraphrase. Get in the habit of using your own words to describe and analyze sources and evidence. Please be mindful that paraphrasing also requires that you use footnotes

The Chicago style of citing we use requires footnotes (at the bottom, or the “foot” of the page) rather than in-text or parenthetical citations. Generally, you want to provide the author’s name, publication title, publication information, date of publication, and page number(s) if it is the first time the source is being used. Any additional usage, simply use the author’s last name, publication title, and date of publication. Footnotes should match with a superscript number at the end of the sentence referencing the source. You should begin with 1 and continue numerically throughout the paper. Do not start the order over on each page.

Different word processors have different mechanisms for inserting footnotes, therefore I STRONGLY SUGGEST YOU GOOGLE OR SEARCH YOUTUBE FOR HOW TO INSERT A FOOTNOTE ON MS WORD, GOOGLE DOCS, OR YOUR PREFERRED WORD PROCESSOR.


All papers in this course require a bibliography, also in Chicago-style, 12pt Times font, with 1″ margins.

A bibliography is simply a list of the books and other sources that are referred to in a scholarly work-such as an essay, term paper, dissertation, or a book. The bibliography comes at the end of the work.

Your bibliography will be on its own separate page, functioning as the last page of all your papers. It will present a list of all the sources referenced in your paper in alphabetical order. Each source or book needs to be listed only once, no matter how many times it is cited in the footnotes of the paper.

Again, refer to the Getting Started Module for links with examples and guidelines of how footnotes and bibliographic entries should look in their proper format.


  1. Do not use the first person in Academic Writing EVER!!!

    • Do not us “I” to refer to yourself in your essay, NEVER EVER EVER. I know it’s you because your name is at the top. Instead of “I believe that the French Revolution was caused by…” instead, write “The causes of the French Revolution were…” You want to present your opinions as fact and it makes your writing read as sloppy and informal.
  2. Do not use contractions in Academic Writing

    • This means do not use “don’t,” “can’t,” “would’ve,” etc. These are all considered informal and not appropriate for a historical essay. Instead, write out do not or did not, cannot, and would have.
  3. Avoid the passive voice

    • People use the passive voice because there is a misconception that it makes writing sound better or more elaborate. In reality, it makes your writing sound weaker. You may want to write “The speech was given by Martin Luther.” Better to just write “Martin Luther gave a speech.
  4. History papers are almost always written in the past tense,
    • Please be careful to keep verb tenses the same in your sentences.

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